Friday, June 21, 2013

Lucky, Armour agreed Rowley-Gordon meeting was wrong but say no need for resignations

Two prominent attorneys have joined the chorus against Integrity Commission chairman Ken Gordon and Opposition Leader Dr Keith Rowley, saying their meeting was inappropriate. 

However, Reginal Armour and Gillian Lucky have told local media they do not believe Gordon needs to resign or should be removed from his position. Their suggestion is that Gordon should recuse himself when the issue of the e-mails comes before the commission.

Armour commented in a statement to the Guardian. "The fact of the meeting having occurred is evidence of an error of judgment on the part of both the chairman and the leader.”

Rowley and Gordon met at Gordon's home on May 15. Gordon wanted to know if the commission was investigating e-mails that Rowley had passed to the president. Gordon assured Rowley that no investigation was taking place.

Armour said what happened at the meeting was irrelevant. "What is the need to preserve confidence in the even-handedness of the decision-making process, in this case of the Integrity Commission," he said. "The process through and by which the e-mail complaint will be considered by the commission must remain untainted by the appearance of the possibility of bias in the decision-maker.”

He said in the present situation there is "no rational or logical or legal reason why, in respect of this error of judgment, the chairman of the Integrity Commission should be required to resign, nor to have his commission revoked." 

Armour said, "The fact of the meeting having occurred and the legitimate concerns expressed over that fact can be addressed, simply and without over-reaction, and we can move on.” He added that Gordon should "indicate publicly and otherwise, in precise and unequivocal terms,” that when a full commission is constituted and the e-mails come before it, he will recuse himself and let the deputy chairman preside. 

Lucky commented on the Rowley-Gordon meeting in her column in the Guardian. "While discussions behind closed doors usually suggest some kind of clandestine activity, it is unfortunate when much more is made of an unfortunate choice of location to hold an otherwise legitimate meeting. 

“There has been such an erosion of public trust in individuals who hold public office that there is always a premature finding of gross misconduct even in the face of full disclosure.”

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Jai & Sero

Jai & Sero

Our family at home in Toronto 2008

Our family at home in Toronto 2008
Amit, Heather, Fuzz, Aj, Jiv, Shiva, Rampa, Sero, Jai